Europe quick to act as climate change bites from glaciers to islands

Source: sharply_done / E+ via Getty Images

(A native of England, veteran journalist Matthew Diebel has worked at NBC News, Time, USA Today and News Corp., among other organizations.)

How something glacial may have sped things up

When I was a boy in the 1960s, my family went on a skiing vacation in Brand, a small Austrian town near the Swiss border. It turned out I was quite good on the slopes. In addition, I fell head over heels for the ski instructress, Birgit, who wore a fetching pink anorak. Unfortunately, though, my father also fell head over heels — literally — and had to be brought down the slopes to a hospital in a “blutwagen” (blood wagon) to have his badly broken leg mended. Thus ended our skiing trips.

I remember the place fondly (even beyond Birgit, that is). At the end of a deep valley, the settlement was picturesque and loomed over by the almost 10,000-foot Schesaplana, a dramatic mountain peak that had a wide ice field called the Brandner Glacier on its slopes.

I was reminded of all this when I read that the population of Switzerland, never a nation to rush into big changes, had voted overwhelmingly in favor of a proposed law to cut the use of fossil fuels and achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050…

Subscribe to Callaway Climate Insights to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.